Council recognises the importance that owning a pet can have on both individuals and families with most pets becoming a well-loved member of the family. However, owning a pet also comes with responsibilities including caring for the welfare of the animal and respecting other members of our community.
The State Government introduced the Animal Management (Cats and Dogs) Act 2008 which provides requirements in relation to:
- mandatory registration of dogs (including rural dogs) over the age of 3 months;
- mandatory microchipping of cats and dogs – also required at point of sale or transfer to new owner;
- breeding of dogs – whether planned or not if your dog is having a litter you must be registered as a breeder. For more information please go to our Dog Breeders web page;
- dog attacks; and
- restricted dog breeds.
Council has introduced Local Law No. 2 (Animal Management) 2012 to assist with other animal management issues including cat registration, noise, wandering dogs/dog off lead and noisy animals. The local law also provides for minimum standards for keeping all animals and another list with specific items for some animals.
Full details are available in Schedules 4 and 5 of Council’s Subordinate Local Law No. 2 (Animal Management) 2012 accessible using the Local Laws database in the Legislation Related Links section.
Depending on the type of animal you have the local law may have requirements to reduce any potentially negative impacts your animal may have on your neighbours.
Approvals to keep animals
If you live on a standard house block you can keep 2 cats and 2 dogs. To keep more than this you are required to apply for an approval. Further examples of where an approval is also required include:
- any dog or cat in a flat or on a small block (less than 400 m2);
- birds (such as budgerigars and canaries) in excess of 20;
- poultry in excess of 6 birds (roosters are not permitted on a standard house block)
- noisy birds such as a cockatoo, galah, peacock or similar;
- horses, cows, sheep, goats or similar – depending on the size of block and number to be kept.
Full details are available in Schedules 1 and 2 of Council’s Subordinate Local Law No. 2 (Animal Management) 2012 accessible using the Local Laws database in the Legislation Related Links section.
Council investigates dog attacks against both humans and other animals. The process may be lengthy while all details of the incident are investigated. Depending on the information provided Council may decide to declare the dog either menacing or dangerous. In both cases strict conditions apply in relation to the enclosure, as well as advising the public of the declaration via signage and special animal tag. These requirements are similar for both categories however a declared dangerous dog must also be desexed. Council also imposes higher registration fees on these dogs.
If your dog is declared dangerous and there was evidence of physical contact with a person or animal the owner may also be prosecuted and face a fine of around $6,500.00. The penalty increases if death occurs as a result of the attack.
Please note that your dog does not need to bite a person to be declared acting, acting aggressively towards someone causing fear may be adequate to declare a dog menacing.
The best ways to prevent an attack are to regularly review your enclosure to ensure that it is secure as well as adequate to prevent the dog from jumping over, going through or digging under. When walking your dog ensure it is always on a lead when off your property and under effective control.
Please remember that any dog may attack or bite at any time. Always be careful and watch your dog around people and other animals.
Traps – Cat and Dog
Council has cat and dog traps available to loan, free, from Council’s administration office at 145 Young Street, Ayr.
Traps can be kept for 1 week, however Council requests that they are not set over the weekend or prior to public holidays.
To request a trap please contact Council’s Customer Service Centre. Officers will contact you when a trap is available.
Cat traps must be picked up from Council, however due to their size, dog traps may be delivered if required.
Responsible Pet Ownership
Owning a pet is a rewarding experience. However, your pet depends on you for its care and control. Below are some helpful hints for owning a pet in the Burdekin.
- Register your dog from 3 months of age and ensure it always wears its registration tag
- De-sex and microchip your dog
- Teach your children to be responsible with their dog and supervise them when they are playing together
- Walk and exercise your dog regularly and ensure you are walking your dog on a lead
- Find out where the dog off-leash areas are located
- Adhere to dog etiquette when using dog off-leash and on-leash locations
- Advise Council of change of ownership details and address
- Always clean up after your dog if it defecates in a public place
- Register your cat from 3 months of age and ensure it always wears its registration tag
- De-sex and microchip your cat
- Keep your cat safely enclosed on your property
- Put an identification tag on your cat's collar and attach bells to warn wildlife
- Play with your cat each day and provide it with toys and a scratching post
Contact Council's Customer Service Centre
Please contact the Customer Service team by phone on (07) 4783 9800 or email by clicking on the Contact Us button below. Our normal office hours are Monday to Friday 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM not including public holidays.Contact Us